Khoresh Fesenjan (Persian Walnut & Pomegranate Chicken) – Thermomix Method
Photo Credit: Elise Bauer
One of my Thermomix clients asked me whether they could prepare any of their favourite Persian recipes in their new Thermomix TM6. Not being familiar with Persian cuisine, I asked them to send me some examples of recipes and I would look at possibly converting them for the Thermomix.
I’m a fan of the wonderfully sweet & tangy flavour of pomegranate molasses, so took an immediate interest in this Persian dish that Neda sent me called Khoresh Fesenjan, a slow cooked stew of chicken, walnuts, and pomegranate molasses. The inclusion of walnuts makes this quite a rich dish, so very much perfect for these end of winter days in the Southern Hemisphere.
As with many stew dishes, Khoresh Fesenjan is certainly not the most attractive looking dish once plated up, but is bursting with a combination of flavours – earthy, tangy, yet slightly sweet – that I’ve never experienced before but very much enjoyed!
* Translates as “may it nourish your soul” in Persian and used as we would use “Buon appetito” to commence a meal.
240g (2 cups) walnuts, roasted in a 180C oven for 10 minutes
1 onion (150g) – peeled & quartered
40g (2 tbsp) oil
1kg boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 5cm pieces
40g (2 tbsp) oil
1 tsp turmeric powder 1/2 tsp white pepper
370g (1 1/2 cups) chicken stock or water
5 tbsp pomegranate molasses
1 tbsp tomato paste
1/4 tsp saffron threads, dissolved in 60ml of boiling water
1-2 tsp brown sugar (optional, to taste)
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
Pomegranate seeds, to garnish
Steamed rice, to serve
- Add roasted walnuts to TM and grind – 10 sec | SP5. Remove and set aside.
- Add quartered onion to bowl and chop – 3 sec | SP5. Scrape down sides.
- To saute/caramelise onions in TM6 (Hi Temp Function) – SET TO GUIDED COOKING RECIPE – Sauteed onions (200-300 g) https://cookidoo.com.au/recipes/recipe/en-AU/r493966. Add 40g of oil (instead of 20g) and 20g ghee or butter. Change time to 15 minutes. Turn speed selector to start and saute : 15 min | HI TEMP
To saute onions in TM5/TM31 – Add 40g of oil and 20g ghee or butter. Saute : 10 min | VAROMA | SP1.
- While onions are sautéing, heat oil in a heavy based fry pan and brown chicken thigh pieces in two batches. Set aside.
- Once onions have sautéed, cancel Guided Cooking and go to Manual Cooking.
- Add turmeric and pepper and saute – 1 min | 100C | SP1.
- Insert BUTTERFLY*. Add browned chicken, ground walnuts, chicken stock, pomegranate molasses and tomato paste and cook for 30 min | 105C | Soft Stir | Reverse | MC Off. If starting to boil too much during this cooking time, reduce the temperature to 100C to cook for remaining time | 100C | Soft Stir | Reverse | MC Off.
- Add soaked saffron threads & liquid, sugar, salt & pepper. Continue to cook 10 min | 100C | Soft Stir | Reverse | MC Off.
- Carefully remove Butterfly, then remove chicken pieces to a Thermoserver or serving dish. Keep warm.
- Reduce remaining sauce in TM bowl by cooking – 10 min | VAROMA | Soft Stir | Reverse | SPLASH GUARD ON.
- Pour over chicken and serve garnished with pomegranate seeds over steamed rice.
* BLADE COVER – If you have a TM Blade Cover for your TM5 or TM6, after sautéing the onions, turmeric & pepper in STEP 6, remove them from the bowl and add them to the browned chicken pieces. Insert the Blade Cover (instead of the Butterfly), then return the sautéed onions, browned chicken, ground walnuts, chicken stock, pomegranate molasses and tomato paste back to the TM bowl and cook as per STEP 7. The Blade Cover prevents the meat from shredding too much on the blades for this type of slow cooking recipe.